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- “A limit skill that inflicts damage commensurate with the damage the user has endured.”
- —Description, Final Fantasy Tactics.
Blade Beam (破晄撃, Hakōgeki?, lit. "Rending Light Attack") is a recurring ability in the series associated with Cloud Strife. It first appeared as one of his Limit Breaks in Final Fantasy VII, and has since appeared in his skillset in other games.
Blade Beam is Cloud's third Limit Break in the game, obtained after killing 120 enemies on Limit Level 1. It inflicts 3.5 times normal damage to a single enemy, and if any other enemies are alive, shockwaves will split from the initial attack and deal normal damage to them as well.
There are actually two versions of Blade Beam, which are used depending on if there is only one target or more. The diffusing waves of the multi-attack version are the only Shout-elemental attack the player can use.
If there is only one target for the attack Blade Beam is, surprisingly, considered a magical attack, even if its damage and accuracy are still calculated from physical stats. The only way to see this is when the target reacts differently whether the attack is physical or magical. If there is only one opponent being hit by Blade Beam they will always counter with the magical counter. This is clear with Lost Number, since he will transform to his magical form after being hit by Blade Beam, but many other enemies also have a magical counter.
Cloud uses Blade Beam in the battle against Loz and Yazoo at the Forgotten City to counter Loz's shockwave with his own. Cloud charges energy to his sword and releases a glowing blue wave toward Loz, stopping the quake he was sending on Cloud's way. Later, Cloud uses an attack that resembles Blade Beam when fighting in Midgar, which leaves three grooves on the ground, similar to how the initial attack can split into multiple shockwaves in Final Fantasy VII.
Blade Beam is an ability of the Soldier class, of which is exclusive to Cloud. It requires 250 JP to learn, has a range of 2 tiles, 1 effect, and a speed of 20. It works much like the Lifebreak spell, dealing damage equal to the difference in Cloud's Maximum HP and his current HP.
- “You're gone!”
- —Cloud using Blade Beam
Blade Beam is a Bravery attack for Cloud, which can only be used while on the ground and is a low, ranged, magical melee attack. It requires 30 CP (15 when mastered) to equip, 120 AP to master, and is learned at level 30. If it hits the target, it can induce Chase.
Blade Beam returns as a Bravery attack for Cloud and remains unchanged in its properties. It is now learned at level 35 and now requires 100 AP to master.
One of Cloud's cards, depicting him in a promotional image for Final Fantasy VII, can use Blade Beam at a cost of the discard of a Cloud card, and one Fire and one Light CP. Blade Beam does 4,000 damage to all the opponent's Forwards.